Cardin Seeks to Tackle Next-Generation Issues as AG

Kate S. Alexander, Staff Writer,

Delegate says he’s focused on public safety and civil rights

As an attorney in private practice and a state representative, Del. Jon S. Cardin said he has spent the last 15 years working to help people who have been harmed become whole again.

“And now I want to do that for the state of Maryland and for each and every citizen of the state of Maryland as the next attorney general,” he said.

Cardin, who represents District 11 in Baltimore County, is one of three Democrats running this June for attorney general. Sen. Brian E. Frosh (Dist. 16) and Del. Aisha N. Braveboy (Dist. 25) also are in the race.

The winner in the June 24 primary will face Republican Jeffrey N. Pritzker and Libertarian Leo Wayne Dymowski in the general election.

Cardin said he got into politics to focus on environmental protection.

But as a father of a 2-year-old daughter and a private practice attorney, issues of public safety, civil rights and the safety of children also became priorities for him.

Cardin, his wife Megan — who is expecting their second child — and their 2-year-old daughter live in Baltimore County.

Cardin has been a delegate for 12 years. As a member of the Ways and Means Committee, Cardin said, his legislative career has focused on taxes, gaming, education and election law — the subcommittee of which he chairs.

Through his work, Cardin said, he became skilled at bringing people together to solve problems before they become crises.

The nephew of U.S. Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin (D), Jon Cardin said he has enjoyed early polling leads based on name recognition. But as the primary nears, he said, the polls show his message is catching on with voters.

“While of course I am very, very appreciative of the advice, the counsel my uncle has given to me and the reputation that he has given to me, I believe that, not only, has my campaigning resulted in improved interests in my candidacy, but my goals of creating a safer Maryland [have] really been resonating,” he said.

Cardin, 44, said he has a unique, demonstrated ability to understand the issues that will matter in coming years.

“Everybody deserves a voice, everybody deserves a safe place to live but also safe air to breathe and also a safe environment to purchase things, be it on the Internet or in person,” he said.

Cyber security, he said, will be a top public safety issue for the next generation, while for consumers, identity theft is the biggest issue.

As a delegate, Cardin sponsored the law that criminalized cyber sexual harassment. He also sponsored Grace’s Law, which he said is one of the nation’s toughest against cyber bullying.

Cardin said it is his personal vision that every single Marylander can vote as conveniently and safely as possible.

He said he is not afraid to take on what he calls the “good ‘ole boys.”

As an attorney, he said, he went after school systems that didn’t take bullying seriously and fought energy companies trying to install explosive gas pipelines under houses.

“I’m not afraid to say, ‘You know what? The safety of every individual and the dignity of every individual far exceeds political gamesmanship,” he said.

“I’ve grown up in a family of public service where I’ve been taught that I want to leave my corner of the world in a better place than I find it,” he said. “I believe this is the best way for me to do it.”